Last updated: 2 November 2022
- Filed under:
- Legal News
- Dana GRUIA DUFAUT
A new legal and institutional framework, meant to expedite and simplify the licensing procedures (for obtaining licenses / authorizations / agreements / permits) required for carrying out an industrial activity in Romania, was set up by the newly adopted GEO no. 140 of October 19, 2022.
The normative act, published in the Official Gazette no. 1023/2022, also provides for the setup and organization of the Office for Industrial Licensing, intended to streamline, simplify, and digitalize the procedure for licensing industrial activities in Romania.
The law defines the unique industrial license as the unilateral administrative act under which a Romanian or foreign legal or natural person is granted permission by an authority to perform one or several industrial activities. The list of the underlying documents for obtaining an industrial license is provided for under the law and it may vary depending on the scope of business of the applicant.
The GEO no. 140/2022 enshrines the use of “one time” principle, according to which, during the application procedure, the applicant for an industrial license will only be required once data and information, by the competent authorities. 38 institutions are aimed at by this reform which is the largest reform ever instituted benefitting companies.
The provisions of this GEO apply to the environmental permit, water management permit and building permit starting with January 1st, 2025.
The Office for industrial licensing
Body of the central authority, with legal personality and territorial structures, the Office for industrial licensing will operate under the authority of the Government and be coordinated by the PM.
The organization and operation of the Office are due to approval by Decision of the Government within 120 days since the entry into force of the GEO no. 140/2022.
Among the main responsibilities of the Office, we cite:
- Approval of measures aimed at simplifying the procedures for delivery of administrative acts;
- Granting, amending, renewal, suspension or withdrawal of the unique industrial license;
- Identifying contraventions and enforce sanctions provided by the law or, as the case may be, referral to the competent authorities;
- Setting up and operating a Unique Electronic Contact Point for Industrial Licenses (PCUEL in Romanian) – an electronic platform interconnected with IT systems of the competent authorities and with the e-guvernare platform, intended to become operational on December 31, 2022, at the latest.
PCUEL will provide access to the following public information: a) The application procedure for a unique industrial license; b) The forms in electronic form; c) The contact details of the competent authorities; d) The contact details for the Office; e) The legislation regulating delivery of administrative acts and the legislation regulating the delivery of the unique industrial license; f) Remedies available in case of disputes.
Clasification of unique industrial licenses
Depending on the risk encompassed by the industrial activity, there are 3 types of industrial licenses:
- the unique industrial license for high risk industrial activity;
- the unique industrial license for medium risk industrial activity;
- the unique industrial license for low-risk industrial activity.
In the 30 days following the entry into force of the Decision of the Government for the setup and organization of the Office, the latter will have to issue instructions on the classification of the industrial activities in the risk categories herein above by taking into account at least the following risk factors: (i) the health of the population, (ii) the impact on the environment, (ii) work safety and (iv) energy consumption.
The competent authorities will classify the industrial activities for which they deliver administrative acts by risk category, withing 60 days since entry into force of the said instructions.
Applying for a unique industrial license
The applicant seeking to obtain a unique industrial licence will submit an application file containing:
- an application filed through PCUEL;
- as appropriate, documents, data or other information required;
- the proof of payment of the fee for delivery of the unique industrial license.
Delivery of the unique industrial license : no later than 180 days after approval of the application for issuance of the license.
Appeals : if the Office refuses to grant the license on grounds of incompliance with the legal conditions, the applicant may appeal against such refuse, as provided for under the Law of administrative contentious no. 554/2004.
Validity of the license : is set in accordance with the category of risk of the industrial activity hereinabove, but no less than one year.
Renewal of the license : is required if the conditions based on which it was issued have changed, if the legal provisions incidental upon have changed or if the term of validity expired.
Modification of the license : is required each time there is a change in the industrial activity based on which it was issued. The applicant or the holder of the license shall inform via PCUEL about any change on the identification data or the scope of business within 15 days.
Withdrawal of the license : the license may be withdrawn in case of bankruptcy or if the holder no longer meets the conditions in which the license was granted.
Validity of the administrative acts approved under normative acts for carrying out an industrial activity : the licenses, authorisations, agreements; permits or other such administrative acts issued prior to the entry into service of the PCUEL are effective during the term of validity set by the competent authority.
Note ! Non-EU or non-EEA legal entities may apply for a unique industrial license only after having set up a company or a branch in Romania abiding by the Companies Law no. 31/1990. Such company or branch will have to be active during the whole term of validity of the unique industrial license.